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In this episode, I explore overthinking (and it's close cousin, anxiety) from an evolutionary perspective and then offer some practical strategies you can apply immediately to help you overcome repetitive, obsessive, non-productive thoughts.
By nature, I tend to overthink. I realized this when I was fairly young and it was a source of frustration for me until I discovered the world of personal development and learned ways to deal with it effectively.
I became pretty good. So good that most of the strategies became second nature to me. Simple things like focus on what I can control, not on what I can't — that sort of thing.
But the other day, I had a bout of, "acute" overthinking that blindsided me and led to a variety of negative feelings (mostly anxiety). It paralyzed me from doing pretty much anything that day.
This hadn’t happened to me in a long time so it forced me to employ some of the more powerful strategies that have helped me in the past in order to pull myself out of that hole.
This podcast is partly the post-game analysis of that experience and partly a guide to dealing with overthinking in general. It is as much for you as it is for me.
Books Mentioned In the Episode:
Brain Rules by John Medina
Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari
The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
Feeling Good by David D. Burns
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I am not a doctor or psychologist and I don't play one on the internet. If you are dealing with clinical anxiety or other mental health issues, this advice should not be construed as a replacement for professional treatment. These are simply strategies that have helped me.
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Ruben Chavez is a writer, personal development educator, and host of The Think Grow Podcast. His Instagram account, ThinkGrowProsper, has amassed over 3 million followers. Along with his blog, these platforms are his way of inspiring and connecting with thoughtful, creative, and ambitious people just like you.